Vermont elm tree
Nature lovers are saying goodbye to an old friend. A venerable old elm tree that’s believed to be the largest of its kind in New England has succumbed to Dutch elm disease.
The tree in Charlotte, Vermont was 19 feet 4 inches in circumference and stood 109 feet tall.
Dutch elm disease is the fungus that spread during the early 20th century and destroyed most of the elm trees in North America. The Vermont tree was removed Tuesday.
Property owner David Garrett says the tree, estimated at 175 to 200 years old, was a local “monument.”
According to reports, the wood will be used to make furniture and other items, and sale proceeds will be used to help The Nature Conservancy’s efforts to restore the elm population by developing disease-resistant strains of the trees.
The largest surviving urban forest of elm trees in North America is believed to be in the city of Winnipeg, Manitoba, where close to 200,000 elms remain – at least double that of Amsterdam, the “Elm City of Europe”. The city of Winnipeg spends $3 million annually to aggressively combat the disease using Dursban Turf and the Dutch Trig vaccine, losing 1500–4000 trees per year.